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Arsenal can lay down a marker

Arsenal
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ESPN FC  By ESPN staff

Wenger supports Jack Wilshere

Arsenal and England midfielder Jack Wilshere is looking to put an eventful week behind him ahead of two crucial World Cup qualifiers

Arsenal manager Arsene Wenger has backed Jack Wilshere over the midfielder's assertion that only "English people" should play for England.

Lomas: St George's Park built to last
• Marcotti: Too much too young
• Brewin: England stuck in the middle

The subject of players' eligibility to represent a nation where they were not born has been a much-discussed topic following Manchester United manager David Moyes' claim that the FA is looking into recruiting Belgium-born Adnan Januzaj -- who has Albanian-Kosovar parents -- in the future through FIFA's five-year residency rule.

When asked at the general issue earlier this week, Wilshere said: "The only people who should play for England are English people. If you live in England for five years, it doesn't make you English.

"You shouldn't play. It doesn't mean you can play for a country. If I went to Spain and lived there for five years, I'm not going to play for Spain."

Wilshere's comments stoked up the debate, and the 21-year-old took the Twitter on Wednesday to clarify his position, saying: "I wish he was English!"

Wenger has backed his player's opinion on the matter, telling BBC Sport: "I agree with him. I always said also an Englishman should manage the England team."

However, Wilshere's opinion was called into question by England cricketer Kevin Pietersen, who has an English mother but, like several of his international teammates, was born in South Africa.

The pair then engaged in an exchange of views on the social network.

 

 

 

In an attempt to close the debate, Wilshere concluded:

 

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